Alphabetical Index of First Second

Maker Comics: Create a Costume!

Create a Costume! is another outstanding entry in the Maker Comics line. Kids these days want to dress up for conventions and other gatherings, and the emphasis here is very much encouraging do-it-yourself. Guided by the Costume Critter, a hamster in a hat and cape, Bea and Parker learn how to decorate, modify, and repurpose secondhand clothes into outfits that can be used for a magical girl or boy a witch or wizard a space traveller a superhero (including a […]

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Stuck Rubber Baby 25th Anniversary Edition

Howard Cruse’s Stuck Rubber Baby, I have no doubt, has changed lives. It changed mine. It’s the semi-autobiographical story of Toland Polk, a young man hiding from his homosexuality in the southern US in the 1960s, as the civil rights movement becomes more important. Toland is raised by well-meaning racists, but he hangs out with people more on the fringes, dating a politicized folk singer and going to parties with a gay former sailor and a drag queen and people […]

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Tillie Walden Needs an Editor: Spinning and On a Sunbeam

Two Tillie Walden books have been holding down the edge of my to-do stack table for years now. And they work well in that function, as Spinning (2017) is just under 400 pages, and On a Sunbeam (2018) is over 540! These are bricks of books, is what I’m saying. Walden does gorgeous art, spare and thought-provoking and expressive, in a variety of genres. Spinning is an autobiography, the story of her time as a teenage figure skating competitor and […]

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History Comics: The Great Chicago Fire: Rising From the Ashes

History Comics: The Great Chicago Fire: Rising From the Ashes was one of the first releases from this new comics line from publisher First Second, who has had great success with their Science Comics. As written by Kate Hannigan and illustrated by Alex Graudins, this is the story of two siblings (and a puppy, for additional cuteness) who get caught up in the 1871 fire that devastated Chicago and left a third of the city homeless. Trying to do a […]

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Science Comics Catch-Up: Cats, Rocks and Minerals, Skyscrapers, Digestive System

Science Comics: Rocks and Minerals Geology from Caverns to the Cosmos by Andy Hirsch I’ve really enjoyed Hirsch’s previous entries in this series, Trees and Dogs (my favorite of the series), so I was disappointed that this wasn’t nearly as entertaining for me. I wasn’t expecting the book to start with so much information about the Big Bang and meteorites and the makeup of the earth and volcanoes. It’s necessary for the topic, I suppose, but that’s not the book […]

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Maker Comics: Survive in the Outdoors!

I’ve been looking forward to this installment of Maker Comics — I’m really curious about learning how to Survive in the Outdoors. As told by Mike Lawrence, Sophia and her younger brother Alonso are spending the weekend with Grandpa, who’s going to take them fishing. They just want to stay on their phones and video games, but he manages to involve them in preparing for their trip. There’s an air of danger to all this. Typical of the series, the […]

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Go With the Flow

Go With the Flow marks just how prevalent female readers and authors have become in comics. As one of the characters says, “Fifty percent of the population gets a period… but it’s like this HUGE secret we can’t talk about?” This book would not have existed several years ago. As it is, it’s a good starting point. It’s a lengthy book, over 300 pages, because the authors touch, if only briefly, on a wide variety of related subjects. (I believe […]

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The Peter & Ernesto Series

The Peter & Ernesto series by Graham Annable features two sloths who are the best of friends although they’re very different in personality. Ernesto is adventurous, wanting to explore and see new things, while Peter appreciates their home and enjoys the familiar. The sloths have perhaps the most minimal character design ever, being basically tubes with faces and sticks for arms and legs, but Annable’s animation experience gives them a wonderful physicality and sense of motion. The result is a […]

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